If any of you have ever ventured in the basement of a small or medium business over the past couple of decades, you’ll have no doubt noticed a creaky old piece of equipment lurking down there, faithfully — or quite often, not faithfully — managing telephony for the business.
That machine is a PBX, and it’s about time we sent the PBX the way of the telex and the rotary telephone: “Thanks for your service, but you’re expensive to buy, a pain to maintain, and we have something that work much better.””
Anyone who has ever used Skype knows what VoIP is. Instead of sending phone calls directly over the lines, conversations are converted into data packets and transmitted over the Internet. The result is a much more flexible, economical, and reliable way to manage a business’s telephony infrastructure.
If you have a very small business, it’s entirely possible to rely on a service like Skype for making phone calls. But, Skype doesn’t scale very well for businesses, and it is difficult to manage centrally, so businesses with more than few employees are going to need something that replaces the functionality of a PBX.
There are many such solutions available: there are SaaS providers that specialize in business VoIP, but if a business truly wants to take control of their telephones and the underlying infrastructure, VoIP using a software IP PBX running on a cloud server or virtual private server is an unbeatable combination. It brings together the reliability and flexibility of VoIP and the cloud to create the ideal telephony solution.
Why You Should Think About A Self-hosted VoIP Solution
Easy To Manage
Frequently, changing a part of a PBX setup meant calling out an engineer, but since VoIP services are implemented in software, rather than hardware, almost every aspect of the system can be managed from a web-based interface. You have true control over your telephony, not your phone company.
When you contract with a phone company, you usually buy a bundle of services that are priced on a monthly or yearly rate. As with most cloud-based services, if you put your virtual PBX in the cloud, you’ll only be paying for what you use. Phone calls are practically free; you’ll just pay for the bandwidth, the cloud server, and a VoIP provider.
Easily Integrated With Existing Software
Because VoIP is implemented in software and most VoIP servers and IP PBX solutions — Asterisk , for example – have clearly defined APIs, it’s fairly easy to integrate them with existing software. That means your telephony systems can be closely coupled with customer relationship management software, sales software, and customer support software.
If it’s time to retire your old PBX or you are setting up a new business, VoIP with an IP PBX is an inexpensive, scalable, and quickly deployed solution.